The Gifenator allows journalists to capture frames from live broadcast streams to republish as GIFs on social media channels.


How can the BBC share visual news coverage on social media more easily?

When news breaks, there is an influx of inbound media to be collated, cut, edited and aired.

Social media channels like Twitter are among the fastest ways to distribute breaking news to our readers. However, it takes time to produce punchier visual posts that use audio, video and images to tell a story.

The Gifenator is a prototype that allows journalists to capture still images and create captioned gifs directly from live video feeds. These can then be automatically watermarked, topped-and-tailed, and published to Twitter in seconds.


Ideally, the Gifenator will allow journalists to select from all inbound streams and present them with a live-rewind option so that they can revisit particular moments in a feed.


The Gifenator started as the 'Captionator', a winning product from the World Service Hack. It was then adapted for Mozfest 2016 to take a live stream from a studio camera and allow users to create and publish gifs to Twitter.


  • This was so popular at MozFest 2016 that our Twitter account was suspended for a while.


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